2014 Montana Whitetail Recap
by Macy Spencer
This last season was a rough one for sure!
Let me preface this by stating: I hunt for food–my freezer is filled with my family’s harvests–but, I also consider size, and I’m not ashamed to say so! I prefer to take a mature buck, especially, if I still have meat in the freezer. Passing a lesser buck, means that it could be a nice buck someday, and I want to see it happen!
During the 2014 deer season, we did a lot of scouting, tons of hiking, and made big plans. Archery season was hot, and the animals didn’t move much. I hunted hard, morning and night, and we did see some good bucks, but nothing that I considered shooting. I spent many mornings and evenings in the field, looking for something to take, but it just didn’t happen. I really wanted to see my husband, CJ, harvest something, but his archery season ended without a harvest too. After the archery season, we took a small break to relax and to prepared for a fresh start to do it all again during the rifle season.
Once again, we hunted hard during the rifle season. On November 19th, just days before the end of season, we went out as a group: me, CJ, his brother Will, and my little brother. We were hunting private land. While talking to the land owner and making a plan of action, I started glassing. I was searching coulees, looking for any activity. Soon, I saw a few whitetail feeding on a hillside. As soon as I saw the deer, I could tell there was a decent buck among them. Without hesitation, I told the group that I was heading over there to take that buck. My little brother joined me on the hunt with me. The other two guys were wanting the buck for themselves, but I explained to them that the spotter gets the buck…and that was me!
I gathered my .300 Ultra Mag and headed for the hill. A short while later, we had eyes on the buck, and he was a definite shooter! While my brother had him locked in the binos, I laid down to ready myself for a shot. I was breathing pretty hard from running over to the hill. Taking deep breaths, I slowed my breathing as much as possible, placed the crosshairs on its vitals, and squeezed the trigger. I hit him good; the buck walked about 20 yards and laid down. Though the buck was going to expire, I got a little closer and took a second shot to ensure it. After the fatal shot, we waved down at the guys, who were waiting anxiously. After snapping a few field photos, we field-dressed buck, and CJ and Will dragged the buck to the truck. Sometimes everything just lines up right and it makes for a wonderful short hunt; this day was one of those hunts. I was excited to show my family and tell the days story, and to get some meat in the freezer. My brother made an awesome European Mount of my buck!
I worked diligently all hunting season, it took all bow and rifle to get a nice buck down, but I learned many things over the course of the year. I’m extremely proud of this successful harvest. Above all else, I enjoyed every second I spent outdoors last year, and looking forward to it all again this fall!